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Changing Video Gamer Demographics

  • Posted: Wednesday, July 30, 2008
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  • Author: pradhana
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  • Filed under: Video Game

Move over, guys. Mom wants to play.

It has been years since the stereotype of teen boy video gamers in the US was wholly true. Most video gamers are adults, and have been since the turn of the century. The percentage of women who are gamers has also been on the rise, so much so that they have dominated casual gaming (think Bejeweled and Scrabble) for some time.

Just over half of casual gamers are women, according to the Casual Games Association's "Market Report 2007." And the association said that nearly three-quarters of casual gamers who pay for their games are female. This demographic shift has not escaped the marketers who target such gamers.

Now video gamer demographics are changing yet again. Nintendo has sold more than 10 million Wii consoles by expanding the audience for video games, according to a July 2008 Associated Press (AP) article. About 28% of the 70 million owners worldwide of the company's handheld DS are female, most of them adult women. Large numbers of adult women and families now use consoles, and are playing more than casual board games on PCs.

The result is that women now not only dominate casual game play, but make up a growing percentage of all video gamers, according to an Entertainment Software Association (ESA)-sponsored study conducted by Ipsos-MediaCT. The ESA said that four out of 10 US video gamers in July 2008 were female and that women ages 18 and older accounted for one-third of game players, compared with only 18% for boys ages 17 and younger.

Other industry watchers agree. Michael Pachter, analyst at Wedbush Morgan, said in the AP article that "five years ago, up to 90% of gamers were the core audience of young men. Today, it's more like 60% to 70%."

Read more - eMarketer

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